Posts Tagged ‘Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’

On February 13, 2014, Melinda Gates, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton teamed up to announce a new effort sponsored jointly by the Clinton Foundation and the Gates Foundation called No Ceilings.  The purpose of this initiative was to gather and analyze data about the status of women and girls’ participation around the world.  The target date for the release of the report was some time in 2015.

Today, Melinda, Hillary, and Chelsea, accompanied by an impressive gathering of powerful women leaders of many ages and from many countries representing a variety of careers and initiatives, released that report.  As they pointed out, we are #notthere – not yet, but we know a lot more about where we are than we did a year ago or ever before in history.

Here is some information about No Ceilings.

In 1995, at the UN Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, leaders from governments and civil society around the world came together and committed to ensuring that women and girls have the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of life.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of that moment. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the No Ceilings initiative of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation have joined forces to gather data and analyze the gains made for women and girls over the last two decades, as well as the gaps that remain.

This site and The Full Participation Report are the result—home to 850,000 data points, spanning more than 20 years, from over 190 countries. Through data visualizations and stories, we aim to present the gains and gaps in understandable, sharable ways—including by making the data open and easily available.

To know how far we need to go to achieve the full participation of women and girls, we have to know how far we have come.

We invite you to explore the site, dig deeper into these stories, share pieces that move you, download the data, and join us in our effort to address the great unfinished business of the 21st century.

No Ceilings is grateful for the support of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Wyss Foundation, as well as organizations and individuals, including the Cheryl Saban Self-Worth Foundation for Women and Girls, Corning, and the Leslois Shaw Foundation.

Read more and download the report here >>>>

See stories here >>>>

ICYMI access the video here >>>>



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Excited to share the data. Hope you will dive in & use it, share it, learn from it, & get motivated:

No Ceilings


Mar 09
New York, NY
Press Release

20 years of global data compiled by No Ceilings show that while progress is possible, more must be done to achieve ‘full and equal participation’ for women and girls worldwide

New York, NY — Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, Gates Foundation Co-Chair Melinda Gates and Clinton Foundation Vice Chair Chelsea Clinton will join global and community leaders for the official release of the No Ceilings Full Participation Report and data visualization site NoCeilings.org on Monday, March 9, at 11:00am in New York City. The release coincides with the commencement of the 59th session of the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women.

The No Ceilings Full Participation Report is the culmination of a year-long effort to aggregate and analyze new and existing global data by the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, in collaboration with The Economist Intelligence Unit, UCLA WORLD Policy Analysis Center, and Fathom Information Design. This comprehensive data is available in written form, as well as through a collection of interactive and sharable visualizations, graphics, stories, and compelling videos produced by Scratch, a division of Viacom. The data is open and easily downloadable.

The No Ceilings Full Participation Report and NoCeilings.org builds on the momentum of “NOT THERE,” an awareness effort launched on International Women’s Day, which brought together leading publications, fashion and consumer brands, celebrities, artists, and members of the social media community to make the point that we’re “not there” yet on issues of gender equality, both at home and abroad.

The No Ceilings data advances the evidence-based case for gender equality. The analysis finds that progress is possible – particularly when countries commit resources and political will. However, more must be done to accelerate the pace of change and achieve the full participation of women and girls in the 21st century.

The report and NoCeilings.org identifies and brings to life the significant gains women and girls have made – and the gaps that still remain – since the U.N. Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995, when Secretary Clinton called on the international community to ensure “women’s rights are human rights.” Key highlights from the report and data include:

  • Significant progress has been made in the areas of health and education; for example, the rate of maternal mortality has almost been cut in half since 1995, and the gap between the number of boys and girls completing primary schools globally has nearly closed.
  • In other areas, the pace of change has been far too slow, including women’s economic participation, leadership, and security.  Even where there has been progress, the gains have not been shared by all: geography, income, age, race, ethnicity disability, sexual orientation, and cultural norms remain powerful determinants of a woman’s chance at equal rights and opportunities.
  • The world has reached a critical moment and can no longer afford to overlook the potential of half the population. Not only is the evidence about the benefits of full participation of women and girls to prosperity and stability stronger than ever before, but we have stronger tools to help accelerate progress, including 21st century technologies and dedicated private sector allies.

Findings from the report and NoCeilings.org will be on display and brought to life at today’s No Ceilings event: “Not There Yet: A Data Driven Analysis of Gender Equality.” The event, which begins at 11:00a.m., ET, at the Best Buy Theatre in New York City, will bring together and showcase the compelling stories of global and community leaders who are actively taking steps to advance the full participation of women and girls in their nations and communities. Storytellers, speakers and participants include:

  • Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton
  • Melinda Gates, Co-Chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation
  • Her Excellency Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, President of the Republic of Croatia
  • Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of the Republic of LIberia
  • Darril Astrida Saunders, Founder, Exotic Caribbean Mountain Pride
  • Shabana Basij-Rasikh, Co-founder and President, School of Leadership, Afghanistan
  • Ikram Ben Said, Founder and President, Aswat Nisaa
  • Usha Choudhary, Secretary and Program Director, Vikalp Sansthan
  • America Ferrera, Actor, Producer, Activist
  • Nely Galan, Founder of The Adelante Movement
  • Helene D. Gayle, MD, MPH, President and CEO, CARE
  • Wanjira Mathai, Director, wPOWER: Women’s Partnerships in Renewables
  • Mrs. Mary Robinson, President, Mary Robinson Foundation – Climate Justice
  • Debra Sterling, CEO, GoldieBlox
  • Dr. Lisa Su, President and CEO, AMD
  • Genette Thelusmond, Auxiliare Midwife, Midwives for Haiti
  • Dr. Marcela Tovar-Restrepo, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO)
  • Uzma, School of Leadership, Afghanistan Scholar
  • Yogesh Vaishnav, Treasurer and Program Manager, Vikalp Sansthan
  • Melanne Verveer, Executive Director, Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security
  • Bruce Wilkinson, President & Chief Executive Officer, Catholic Medical Mission Board
  • Sheryl WuDunn, Co-author, A Path Appears
  • Malala Yousafzai, 2014 Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Co-Founder of the Malala Fund (via video)


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Remarks at the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue Signing Ceremony


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Liberian President Sirleaf
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
January 15, 2013

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, welcome to the Treaty Room. I am delighted to have this occasion, once again, to host President Sirleaf, a very good partner over many years, and especially, I would say, over the last four years it has been a great personal pleasure for me to work with her to strengthen that partnership between the United States and Liberia. And I also am grateful, as well, for her personal friendship.Today, we are taking another important step to deepen the partnership between our nations and to support Liberia as it continues down the path of democratic and economic reform. The partnership dialogue we are about to sign will expand the cooperation between our countries and ensure high-level engagement for years to come.

This agreement establishes working groups in three key areas – first, agriculture and food security; helping Liberia’s farmers use their land more effectively and get their crops to markets more efficiently will be critical to improving the health and prosperity of people throughout Liberia. This working group will review progress under the Feed the Future Initiative, look for new opportunities to attract private investment in the agriculture sector, and recommend policies to promote food security and better nutrition.

Second, energy and power infrastructure. We know that access to affordable, reliable energy is essential to creating jobs and sparking growth that helps to build a strong economy. So we will take stock of outstanding needs for the generation, transmission, and distribution of energy, promote a regulatory environment that’s friendly to new investments in energy, and look for ways to accelerate the development of a well-governed and inclusive energy sector.

And finally, we want to look at human development with a real emphasis on creating more economic opportunity for the people of Liberia to expand access to education and employment so that many more Liberians have a chance to not only better themselves and their families, but make a contribution to their nation.

I think it is more than fair to say that this last decade has been a success story for Liberia. The people of Liberia have emerged from a time of violence and lawlessness and have made tremendous commitments to both economic and political reform. The United States has stood by Liberia during this challenging process, but I think it is also more than fair to say it was aided considerably by the leadership, the determination of a woman who understood in every fiber of her being what was at stake. And so, Madame President, let me, on behalf of the United States, thank you for the great progress under your leadership, pledge our continuing support and partnership and friendship to you and to the people of your country. (Applause.)

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: Secretary of State Clinton, members of the Administration, ladies and gentlemen, I am honored to be here today for several reasons. First, I feel privileged to have been invited to the State Department this week, one of the last weeks that you, Madame Secretary, will be in office, to say thank you for all that you have done for Liberia and the Liberian people, to say thank you for always being there for Liberia.

Second, for me personally, it was important to be here today to see that you have fully recovered – (laughter) – from your recent illness, to embrace you, and to let you know that all of Liberia prayed for your speedy recovery.

Third, I have always seen Liberia’s progress as underpinned by its special relationship with the United States. The launching today of the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue is an historic achievement, one that will cement the strategic cooperation between our two countries for generations to come regardless of the occupants of the White House or the Executive Mansion. Dear friends, today for us marks an historic day for the Government and people of Liberia, the fulfillment of a wish first articulated last June for the institutionalization of the longstanding bilateral relationship between Liberia and the United States of America.

Just seven months ago, we made the rounds among congressional and U.S. Government officials. We put forward proposals on how the United States could work with Liberia as a partner to consolidate its gains. One proposal called for the establishment of a joint United States-Liberia bi-national commission established (inaudible) in the 1960s, which aimed to ensure that the partnership would endure for 50 years or more.

I recall vividly when I made the case to you, Madame Secretary, your support was instantaneous. You assured me that you would figure out how to embed such a relationship in our governments and countries, and here we are today for the signing of the statement of intent, Liberia’s chance with the United States as a reliable partner in the region. The U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue would allow our two countries to look at our relationship strategically with a view towards the long term and focus on those areas that encourage broad-based economic growth, including agriculture and food security, energy and power infrastructure, and human development.

We look forward to carrying out the first meeting of the U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue under the leadership of Secretary of State designate, Senator John Kerry, who also has been an essential supporter of Liberia during his long service on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, including his time as chairman. We recognize that this will not just be a job for our two governments, but also for the business communities of both countries and other stakeholders in Liberia.

Madame Secretary, I’m especially pleased that we were recently declared eligible for compact status by the Millennium Challenge Corporation. Coming just two years after being awarded a threshold program and seven years after the reestablishment of democracy in Liberia, this is one of Liberia’s proudest achievements. I would like to recognize the presence here of MCC President Daniel Yohannes and to promise you that we will deliver a compact program that will be comprehensive and resulting.

I take this opportunity to thank Assistant Secretary of State Johnnie Carson for his steadfast leadership on Africa policy over the past four years. Ambassador Carson, we wish for you the best and hope you will continue to find a way to stay engaged with us in Liberia. We also congratulate President Barack Obama on his forthcoming inauguration to a second term of office. We trust that we can count on him and on Africa’s continued support under his leadership to Liberia and to Africa.

Madam Secretary, Hillary – (laughter) – you’ve been a true friend of Liberia and to me personally. We are pleased that in the history of our bilateral relationship, which spans more than a century and a half, you made two trips to Liberia while in office as Secretary of State. You have supported our country’s progress, championed our political process, and pushed to settle Liberia’s external debt. As we bid you farewell, I remain convinced that in this era of economic challenge, history will show that your support and the investment of the U.S. Government and the American people in Liberia will return significant dividends.

We’ll continue to guard the peace, promote reconciliation, build strong democratic institutions, and show good governance and transparency, and encourage broad-based economic development. We will continue to strive to be a post-conflict success story. For that, Madam Secretary, is America’s success also. Thank you. (Applause.)

MODERATOR: Secretary Clinton and President Sirleaf are signing a statement of intent between the United States and the Republic of Liberia to establish a partnership dialogue. The U.S.-Liberia Partnership Dialogue will ensure sustained high-level bilateral engagement on issues of mutual interest.

(The document was signed.) (Applause.)

SECRETARY CLINTON: Thanks to everyone who helped work on this. I see a lot of the faces from across the State Department. Let’s get a picture with everybody coming up behind us, perhaps.

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Stunning that with all those “pop” names on the list, nowhere do I see Catherine Ashton’s name!  Have I missed it, or is she somehow simply not on the list?  The list becomes something of a joke when Lady Gaga (# 14) outranks Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (#82) , and Catherine Ashton is left off completely.  Before the “Little Monsters” jump all over me:  Regardless of how many of you she can reach with a single tweet (that may or may not be earth-shattering – more likely not), I fail to see  how being a Tweet Star (the reason given by Moira Forbes for this ranking) makes Gaga more powerful than the first woman elected president of an African nation or how Cathy Ashton somehow does not qualify at all.

I love to see Hillary Clinton honored, but when the list is this unbalanced and disorganized it loses its gravitas and becomes just another pop item.

WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 11: U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (C) speaks during a meeting of the Quartet on the Middle East Peace while flanked by US envoy for Middle East Peace David Hale (R), and EU Foreign Minister Catherine Ashton (L), during the G8 Foreign Ministers meeting, on April 11, 2012 in Washington, DC. Secretary Clinton hosted this years G8 Foreign Ministers conference at the Blair House. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
8/22/2012 @ 11:32AM |

The Most Powerful Women In Politics, 2012

For the second year running, three of the top five women on FORBES list of the world’s 100 most powerful women are politicians. In the list as a whole, 19 politicians hold court, including eight heads of state. It wasn’t a U.S. election year, which explains the exit of the Tea Party candidates who wielded considerable power in 2011, but overall more than half of the political returnees from last year’s list shot considerably up the rankings.

What does this say about the changing dynamic of women in politics around the world? In the words of former Secretary of State Madeline Albright, alittle something like this: “People say there are not enough qualified women, that’s one of the biggest bullshit things I’ve ever heard.”

Read more >>>>

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Remarks With Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Before Their Meeting


Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Treaty Room
Washington, DC
June 8, 2012

SECRETARY CLINTON: Well, it’s indeed a great pleasure to once again welcome the president of Liberia, a partner and friend to so many here in the United States, to me as well personally. President Sirleaf has demonstrated great commitment and absolute devotion to her country following a very terrible conflict that did so much damage to the people of Liberia. And the United States will continue to work with her and with her government and the Liberian people as they make progress into the future.

So Madam President, again, welcome.

PRESIDENT SIRLEAF: Thank you very much, Secretary Clinton. As we start a new administration in Liberia, I’ve come on behalf of the Liberian people to say how much we appreciate the partnership, the support we’ve received, that has enabled us to make so much progress in these past six years.

As we go forward with this administration, we’d like to see the partnership strengthen. We want to make sure that all the things we’ve done now translate into improving the welfare of our people. That’s our new agenda.

And I’ll be participating in the USAID conference on Frontiers in Development where new innovative and creative things financing under these partnerships will be discussed. I bring with me some members of our legislature so they too can have the opportunity to exchange views and to go back strengthened as they play their role in collaborating with the administration for the good of our people. Thank you so much.


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She has been in the Ivory Coast since about mid-day our time, but earlier today, Mme. Secretary led the U.S. delegation to the second inauguration of Nobel laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as President of Liberia. We see her arriving with U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (C) arrives at the arrive at the inauguraion ceremony of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in Monrovia, on January 16, 2012. Clinton arrived in Liberia ahead of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf's inauguration for a second six-year term in office. Some 30 heads of state are expected to attend the swearing-in of Sirleaf, a joint winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011, in the $1.2 million (900,000 euro) inauguration which will include a massive parade in the capital and festivities around the country. AFP PHOTO/STR (Photo credit should read STR/AFP/Getty Images)

US Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton () sits next to Senegal's President Abdoulaye Wade (C) during the inauguration ceremony for the President of Liberia for another term on January 16, 2012 in Monrovia. Liberia's Nobel peace laureate Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was sworn in Monday in a lavish $1.2 million ceremony and called for reconciliation after her reelection in disputed polls divided the nation. With US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in attendance, the 73-year-old grandmother took the oath administered by the country's Chief Justice Johnnie Lewis as thousands looked on from the grounds of the capitol building. AFP PHOTO / STRINGER (Photo credit should read STRINGER/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (seated on L) meets with Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf (2nd R) at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Monrovia January 16, 2012. Clinton is in Liberia to attend the second presidential inauguration of Sirleaf, Africa's first woman president, later in the day. REUTERS/Larry Downing (LIBERIA - Tags: POLITICS)

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On our Martin Luther King Day, Secretary Clinton is leading the U.S. delegation to the second inauguration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia, a country founded by freed American slaves.  The capital was named for President Monroe.   Mme.  Secretary is on a two-day whirlwind trip, stopping in four countries.

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From the en route background briefing:


Background Briefing en route Liberia

Special Briefing

Senior Administration Official, Office of the Spokesperson
ERT Monrovia, Liberia
January 15, 2012

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE:  Our first stop in Liberia is to attend the second inauguration of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf as president of Liberia. This is an extraordinarily important occasion because of the fact that Liberia is now experiencing nearly a decade of peace after 15 years of enormous civil conflict in which that country was destroyed by two leaders – Charles Taylor, who is currently being indicted by the ICC, and by the late Samuel Doe. Fifteen years of violence was ended in 2003. Ellen Sirleaf Johnson was elected president in 2005, and she has now been reelected last year in November to a second term.

Liberia has been a close friend of the United States for many, many years, a country established by freed American slaves in 1848, and is probably as close as any country in Africa ever will be to being a American colony. But this is special because Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has done a remarkable job over the last four and a half years of rebuilding her country, promoting reconciliation, and beginning the difficult task of reestablishing one of Africa’s weakest infrastructures. It’s also important because Ellen Johnson Sirleaf is the only female president in Africa, and she was, last year, awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her reconstruction work.

This is an opportunity for the United States to express our appreciation and praise for the outstanding work that she has done over the last five years to acknowledge the success of her recent election, to applaud her for her Nobel Prize, and to help encourage the reconstruction to continue, reconciliation and reconstruction that is going on there. You all may remember that the Secretary last visited Monrovia in August of 2009. This is the second trip by the Secretary to Monrovia since she came into office three years ago.

Our second stop is to Cote d’Ivoire, where we have one of Africa’s newest and most dynamic presidents, Alassane Ouattara, in power. Cote d’Ivoire, as many of you know, was the most important country in Francophone Africa. It was the jewel in the crown of the French colonial system, and up until a decade ago, rivaled Nigeria and Ghana as one of the three leading economic powerhouses in West Africa. A decade ago, after failed elections and the assassination of the sitting president, the country went into a deep political spiral. And for a decade, one leader dominated the political agenda in an authoritarian and frequently brutal manner. He is now in The Hague being indicted for his actions.

But you may recall in November of (inaudible), Alassane Ouattara actually won the election for the presidency, but Laurent Gbagbo, the old and now arrested president, refused to acknowledge those results, although they were certified by the United Nations, by the Carter Center, by the European Union, and also by ECOWAS leaders in West Africa. For four months, four and a half months, we along with others in the international community tried to get Mr. Gbagbo to leave. President Obama directly engaged in this effort himself, as did Secretary Clinton, who actually provided a way out for Mr. Gbagbo, but he did not, in fact, accept it.

The UN as well as French troops ultimately removed Mr. Gbagbo from power and put in place Alassane Ouattara, who is the current president. In the short period that he has been in office, he has helped to restore some of the country’s economy, reopen the ports, started the process of rebuilding some of the roads, and moving the country’s agriculture, mostly cocoa, out to markets. President Obama had an opportunity on July 29, 2011 to invite Alassane Ouattara to the White House along with other – four other – three other Francophone African presidents to demonstrate U.S. support for democracy and political reconciliation.

The Secretary’s trip to Cote d’Ivoire will, in fact, underscore our commitment and the President’s commitment to strengthening democratic institutions, standing by political leaders who are prepared to work for democracy, and to improve human rights and economic opportunities. This will be the first visit by a Secretary of State to Cote d’Ivoire since George Shultz was here in 1986 – a long time, but it is, again, an opportunity to underscore our support for democracy and for conflict reconciliation – post-conflict reconciliation.


I will just mention that the Secretary, while she is in Cote d’Ivoire, will in fact have meetings with President Ouattara and his senior government officials, but she will also participate in a Cote post-conflict reconciliation event with a number of young political leaders who are across the political divide in that country.

The third stop is going to be to Lome, Togo. Again, Togo has a interesting political history and background. From 1967 to 2005, Togo was dominated by a single individual, one of Africa’s longest serving rulers, President Eyadema, who was, in fact, one of the first coup leaders in Africa. He was – he died in 2005. There were hasty elections – not so very good ones – which brought in his son to power, President Faure. Those elections were accompanied by violence. Since then, there have been a second set of presidential elections in March and April of 2010. Those elections were substantially better than the first election, and in fact, represented only the third time that the country had had anything that resembled elections in a multiparty process.

President Faure has – is determined to break away from the history of his father. He is determined to put in place a strong reform-minded government – one that is democratic, multiparty, and which opens up the country. This will be an opportunity for Secretary Clinton to encourage President Faure to continue along a reformist path, to continue to promote political reconciliation in his country, and to speed on economic reforms that will embrace a larger portion of the country.

This will be a historic visit. No president and no secretary of State have ever visited Togo before. This will be the first time that we will have a visit of a U.S. official at this time.

Equally important for us, many of you know that in January of this year, Togo became a nonpermanent member of the UN Security Council. It will be on the council for approximately two years. It’s an opportunity to develop stronger relations with them as they serve their tenure on the Security Council.


MODERATOR: Do you want – Cape Verde, or you want to do that on the way to Cape Verde?

SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: We’ll do that one on the way to Cape Verde.


SENIOR ADMINISTRATION OFFICIAL ONE: I could just say that the Secretary is going to briefly make a stop in Cape Verde, where she will meet with the prime minister. Cape Verde is one of Africa’s strongest and most successful democracy. It is, along with Mauritius and Botswana, a premier democratic performer – a multiparty political system, good human rights records, but more important than anything else, it has effectively utilized its foreign assistance probably better than any other African state. It was, in fact, the first country to be given a second MCC grant after effectively utilizing its money well during the first grant.

Many of you – some of you who were, again, with us in August of ’09 know that we met there with the president, the prime minister, and foreign minister during this Secretary’s first visit to Africa. Cape Verde has probably done more than any other country to transform its economy and open up opportunities for its people. And so it’s a good friend and a good partner and a strong multiparty democracy.



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Secretary Clinton To Travel to Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, and Cape Verde

Press Statement

Victoria Nuland
Department Spokesperson, Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
January 13, 2012

Secretary Clinton will travel to Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Togo, and Cape Verde on January 16 – 17, 2012 to demonstrate U.S. commitment to post-conflict return to peace, good governance, and economic development as well as to emphasize U.S. focus on democratization.

While in Liberia, Secretary Clinton will attend President Sirleaf’s inauguration and preside over the ribbon-cutting of the New U.S. Embassy Compound in Monrovia. In Cote d’Ivoire, she will meet with President Ouattara to showcase our support for national reconciliation and strengthening democratic institutions following successful legislative elections in December 2011. In the first visit of a Secretary of State to Togo, Secretary Clinton will meet President Faure to demonstrate U.S. support for Togo’s democratic progress and economic reforms and to congratulate Togo on its recent election to the United Nations Security Council, where it holds a non-permanent seat for 2012 and 2013. In Cape Verde, Secretary Clinton will meet Prime Minister Neves to discuss cooperation on regional issues like counternarcotics, good governance, sound economic policies, and Cape Verde’s second Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact.

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Elections in Liberia

Press Statement

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
November 15, 2011


On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I want to congratulate the Liberian people for exercising their right to vote in last week’s presidential and legislative elections. These historic elections are important milestones on Liberia’s path toward democratic reconciliation. The United States congratulates President Sirleaf on her re-election and we will continue to work with her and all elected officials to advance democracy, and promote peace and prosperity.

The United States commends the National Elections Commission for conducting free, fair, and transparent elections. We applaud the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the African Union and others for sending observers to monitor the elections, as well as the UN Mission in Liberia for promoting security during the electoral process.

The violence on November 7th marred this otherwise peaceful process, so we welcome the creation of a Special Independent Commission of Inquiry to investigate the incident. We are also deeply disappointed by the Congress for Democratic Change’s decision to boycott the run-off election in an attempt to delegitimize the election. We urge all political parties to respect the election results and resolve their differences peacefully.

The United States is a long standing friend of the Liberian people and we are committed to their future. Congratulations on this momentous occasion.

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The Nobel Committee made history last week by naming three women as this year’s winners of the Peace Prize.  Liberia’s President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the first female president in Africa, Leymah Gbowee, also of Liberia,  and Tawakul Karman of Yemen were all congratulated last week by our esteemed Secretary of State who very early in her tenure made women and girls her signature issue and never delivers a major speech without mentioning that societies that ignore and subjugate half the population cannot succeed and prosper.

In a guest column at The Moderate Voice, Taylor Marsh credits Hillary Clinton’s high profile campaign to put women and girls on fair footing internationally as having  an effect upon thinking world wide.

The Hillary Effect: Nobel Peace Prize for 2011 Goes to Three Activist Women

Posted by TAYLOR MARSH, Guest Voice Columnist in At TMV, Featured Articles.
Oct 8th, 2011

…it was Hillary Rodham Clinton who has tirelessly trumpeted to the world to wake up to what women’s contributions to their countries mean to the world and anyone wanting stability to rein in still developing, often troubled, regions.

As the Washington Post reported in January, 2010, the Hillary Effect was already in full swing around the world, because of Hillary’s presence, her footprint.

“Hillary Clintonz is so visible” as secretary of state, said Amelia Matos Sumbana, who just arrived as ambassador from Mozambique. “She makes it easier for presidents to pick a woman for Washington.”

No one in the Obama administration has worked harder in the last few years to put women’s rights in the forefront of changing countries more than Secy. Clinton. No one has so relentlessly made the case that women can close the gap in stabilizing a troubled country, including setting a burgeoning economy on firmer ground.

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Here on these page, I am always trying to put Hillary out in front, to publicize her work,  and to help amplify her voice.  I seems, though, that a great deal of what she accomplishes happens behind the scenes or as an effect of work she has done.  The Hillary Effect.  The lovely lady herself does not appear to mind not getting credit for her impact.  Nevertheless, I will continue to tell that story.   This is one of my favorite pictures of her.  It was my wallpaper for a long time.  It says a mouthful.

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Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Hillary Rodham Clinton

Congratulations to Female Nobel Peace Laureates

Press Statement

Hillary Rodham Clinton
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
October 7, 2011

I am delighted to send heartfelt congratulations to Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Yemeni activist Tawakkul Karman and Liberian peace activist Leymah Roberta Gbowee for the prestigious honor of sharing this year’s Nobel Peace Prize. They are shining examples of the difference that women can make and the progress they can help achieve when given the opportunity to make decisions about the future of their societies and countries.

The unflinching courage, strength and leadership of these women to build peace, advance reconciliation, and defend the rights of fellow citizens in their own countries provide inspiration for women’s rights and human progress everywhere. This recognition of their extraordinary accomplishments reflects the efforts of many other women who are promoting peace and security in their countries and communities. I want to commend the Nobel Committee for recognizing the powerful role women are playing in building peace and ending conflict around the world.

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